UK: Dairy coalition commits to working strategy for British dairying

A Dairy Coalition set up to combat low milk prices says its members will work together to deliver on its 10 point strategy to help secure the long-term future of the British dairy industry.

Speaking today at the Livestock Event, National Farmers’ Union (NFU) dairy board chairman Mansel Raymond said the primary objective of the Dairy Coalition was to see a fair and functioning market place for the UK dairy industry.

“We formed this coalition because our dairy market simply wasn’t working,” he said. “This was made very clear when we saw devastating price cuts this the spring, and further price cuts planned for August. Market highs, when we have seen them, have not been passed down to the farm gate.

“From working together we have seen SOS Dairy engage with government, with our milks buyers, with processors and other large buyers of milk – and this work must and will continue.

“We need to ensure we deliver on our ten point plan and we have committed to working as a coalition to ensure we do just that. We will focus on three key areas including exposing bad practices, redefining and empowering the farmers’ role in the supply chain and ensuring the supply chain is transparent and fair.”

Farmers For Action (FFA) chairman David Handley said: “The SOS Dairy campaign has seen this coalition of dairy farmers and organisations working together to demand fairer contracts and a more transparent supply chain for dairy farmers. While we are not at the end of this journey we have made great inroads, not least of which is the new voluntary code which has been announced by the NFU, NFUS and Dairy UK.

“We are committed to working as a coalition to represent the views of each organisation and to apply pressure to deliver on our ten point plan. This will help us to secure a long-term future which will benefit the whole of the British dairy industry and safeguard British dairy products for consumers.”

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Members of the coalition are the NFU, NFU Cymru, NFU Scotland, FFA, Tenant Farmers’ Association (TFA), Women’s Food and Farming Union (WFU) and the Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers (RABDF).